SM Ceramics

SM Ceramics

About The Artist

Stephanie McGeorge • Livingston, MT

Stephanie McGeorge is a ceramic artist whose work exhibits both the rigor of her classical artistic training and the unexpected delight of her artistic instincts. Her hand-drawn lines appear impossibly perfect, and her choices of colors and shapes bring joyful surprise. Stephanie lives in Montana, where the Yellowstone River and mountains are the backdrop to her art. She is inspired everyday by the patterns and unexpected moments found in the nature around her.


Artist website

Q&A with the Artist

Tell us how your work is made.

My work is handmade. Each piece is initially created on the potter’s wheel. Placing each piece upside down on the potter’s wheel, I then trim the bottom using hand held tools. Handles or other attachments are hand formed and attached, and lastly I fire my work in an electric kiln. I use black and white stoneware clay as well as porcelain. My surface designs are created by layering cut outs of newsprint paper with painted slip and/or underglaze over them. I peel away the paper to reveal a pattern, often repeating this two to three times adding different colors with each layer. I then hand draw carvings of stripes, circles or paisley inspired designs using a needle tool. I complete each piece with glaze making it functional and ready for use.

What makes you passionate about the medium you work with?

The tangibility of clay is soothing to me. The physicality of interacting with it allows my mind and body to connect in a very focused way, while creating long lasting objects that symbolize that sort of meditative state I feel when making. I like that the surface of a functional object can become a canvas, whether blank or filled, adding a story and point of connection between myself and others. Working with clay entails a linear process that I find great comfort in. As a process oriented person it allows me space and time to process thoughts and emotions. Additionally each step in the process can also be done in many different ways to achieve endless outcomes, this diversity and breadth of the medium keeps me captivated and eager to keep learning new things.

What is something unique about you or your practice?

My work is either unexpectedly colorful and vibrant or elegantly simple and bare. This duality creates a dialogue of opposites to me that I often feel within my own thought process, however externally they are unexpected side by side. Both bodies of work show great care and precision in form and surface. I accentuate the details of each piece, anticipating the way someone might interact with it and come to appreciate it. The rim, handle, foot and body of a pot hold specific considerations as points of contact. This precision and care unexpectedly unifies my work and creates a unique cohesion. Additionally I think the way I use photography in my practice to find inspiration and clarity is unique. Viewing stacked ware through a camera lens flattens the three dimensional for me and allows me to think of the form as a composition. The interchange between 2D and 3D extends to the surface of each piece inspiring texture, surface designs and drawings.